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Arcade: Maze
ZX Spectrum 128K

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Richard Eddy, Mike Dunn
Chris Bourne

Here's a turn up for the books. Psyclapse, the software house which normally concentrates on 16- bit games, suddenly pop up in the Spectrum 'field' with this odd two-player Gauntletesque game.

'It's double fun and double trouble all the way!' proclaims the jubilant inlay. Hem hem, this is a bijou libette. What we've got here is a split-screen maze game (two players simultaneously), with very tiny graphics (one character square per graphic) and confusing flick-screen movement.

Captain Fin has to destroy the master computer by eliminating all the alien generators on each of the 20 levels. If you don't, the space station you're on will sun dive. As you and your mate (Cap'n Flu has apparently been cloned to work as a stormtrooping double-act) explore the mazes, viewed from overhead, an onslaught of aliens will try to stop you - quite persuasively too - with their megabolt lasers. You've laser too, so blast 'em back, Cap.

There are also colour-coded keys which are required to enter and explore rooms within the maze. The main objective on each level is to reach the lifts, transporting you to the next level... and so on till you reach the master computer on level 20.

Puzzles and barriers must be solved and broken down to gradually disarm the planetary defences.

A relatively simple game, but with tricky elements, Captain Fizz obviously hopes to win on the playability rather than the graphics - which have little variety throughout and are mainly 8x8 pixels. Unfortunately, it doesn't work loo well and left me unexcited. Even at its best, with two-players, it remains extraordinarily average. A disappointing release from what is actually a decent software house.



'It's coming to something when a programmer using single character graphics can't even scroll a quarter screen gameplay area smoothly. You really do have to see the graphics in Captain Fizz to believe them; I think that any software house expecting people to buy a game that looks like this is off its proverbial rocker. If you're already lucky enough to own a magnifying glass, then Mr Fizz might he worth a look (a very close one), because its quite playable it you use your imagination. Value for money is a bit of a joke, I'm afraid. Still, what it amounts to is a poor spacey Gauntlet variant, and a big let down from Psyclapse.' MIKE

A badly programmed Gauntlet clone. We expect better from Psyclapse.